MCLEAN, VA—Media giant Gannett has named Jeremy Gaines (pictured) to lead corporate communications, responsible for explaining Gannett's path forward and how its capabilities, principles, products and services create value and position the company for success in the digital age. He will lead internal and external communications programs for the company and will serve as communications advisor to the senior management team. Gaines joins Gannett from MSNBC, where he spent 14 years, most recently as vice president of corporate communications.

WASHINGTON, DC—Likely Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has hired Richard Grenell, a veteran GOP communications strategist who served in the George W. Bush administration, as his national security and foreign policy spokesman. During all eight years of the Bush administration, Grenell served as director of communications and public diplomacy at the United Nations, where he advised four US ambassadors to the United Nations. Since leaving the Bush administration, he has been based in Los Angeles as a partner with Capitol Media Partners.

PARSIPPANY, NJ—As part of an executive restructuring, Watson Pharmaceuticals has named Charles Mayr chief communications officer, global, with expanded global communications, investor relations and corporate affairs responsibilities. Mayr joined Watson as senior vice president, corporate Affairs in September 2009, having previously operated an advertising and public relations consulting company, serving clients including Watson, the Generic Pharmaceuticals Association and Barr Pharmaceuticals. Prior to starting his consultancy business, he served as director of corporate communications for Barr and director of global communications for Sterling Drug.

SPARTANBURG—BMW Manufacturing has promoted Max Metcalf, manager of corporate communications, to manager for government and community relations. Schylver “Sky” Foster, who currently serves as the plant's manager of compensation, working structures, benefits and human resources strategic planning, will fill Metcalf's previous role.

WASHINGTON, DC—SoundExchange, a non-profit performance rights organization that represents the recorded music industry, has hired Marie Knowles as vice president of communications. She will lead the organization's strategic communications, including public relations, media relations and internal employee communications strategy. Previously, she held roles at Iridium, GolinHarrix, XM Satellite Radio and Ogilvy Public Relations Worldwide.

MONTPELIER, VT—The Vermont Ski Areas Association has named Sarah Neith as director of public affairs. She will work closely with Vermont ski resorts to strengthen winter tourism through Ski Vermont’s public relations efforts and the association’s youth and agricultural programs. She comes to Ski Vermont with public relations and marketing management experience with ISIS outdoor apparel and Ashgate Publishing. In addition, Sarah has been a ski patroller in Vermont since 2004.

NEW YORK—Prime Research, a leader in strategic communications research, has added Charlene Davis as a marketing manager to support PRIME’s rapidly growing business in the Americas. Davis joins Prime from Norwegian Cruise Line in Miami, Florida where she focused on business development and sales as a personal cruise consultant. Earlier, she was an editorial specialist at the International Association for Asset Recovery and an intern at The J.R. O'Dwyer Company.